Friday, December 26, 2008


John MacArthur on "The Ugliness of Christmas"

I don't agree with MacArthur, that there is any spiritual beauty in Christmas, because Christ-mass is the invention of the Roman Catholic church in its attempt to gain converts by syncretizing paganism with their dead orthodoxy. I cringe when I hear the story of Christ's birth referred to as "The Christmas Story", because the Christmas Story is the story of the history of the Roman Catholic church and its attempt to entice the whole world into a spiritually dead entity by creating a "holyday" (holiday) for some very unholy, and spiritually dead people.

The early church did not celebrate Christ's birth. Their focus was on His death and what it meant to them: new life in Christ and the death of their sinful flesh. But what MacArthur says about Christ's purpose for coming to earth is right on: Jesus Christ came into this world to save us from our sin. If you miss this truth, you miss everything. All four of the gospels mention Christ's death, but only two of them His birth. I think that says something about how we should spend our time. In our culture, the whole month of December , and sometimes even most of November is spent preparing for and joining in various Christmas festivities. I believe it is high time true followers of Christ take a careful look at their involvement in these activities, and ask themselves if it is a true reflection of their faith, if the time spent is a true reflection of their love for Christ. I can't help but believe that it detracts from the message of the cross, or rather eclipses it. Some will say that we have Easter for that. But once again, Easter (Astarte/Ishtar) is the syncretization of paganism and dead orthodoxy, and then it is only for the span of three days. How disproportionate compared to the time we focus on His birth each year. The true Christian church has been duped into following in the footsteps of the Roman Catholic church once again.

I was having a conversation with my husband today about how we and other Christians have allowed ourselves to be swallowed up by our culture. It is a very gradual process, being barely perceptible. It has been rather interesting for me to note that since I have abandoned the celebrations of Christmas and Easter in our home, that living the crucified life has become much more important; or maybe it is the other way around, that learning the significance of Christ's death for me, and the necessity of living a crucified life myself, that the attractions of these two seasons has been lost to me. I have actually experienced a real freedom in this; and not only that, I have found I have many more opportunities to witness to people I see everyday when they ask me if I am ready for Christmas (or Easter, if that is the time of year). The question we need to be asking people is whether or not they have dealt with their sin, and whether or not they are ready to face Christ. I see the majority of Christians these days la-de-da-ing through life as if there is no eternity, so caught up with this world that they have become ineffective in their ability to witness the truth to those around them. We are kidding ourselves if we think we can follow in the pattern of the world and have any true impact. I hate that phrase, "He (or she) is so heavenly minded he is of no earthly good". That is a phrase that contradicts Scripture. We are supposed to set our minds , hearts and affections on things above, not on things of the earth.

As this season is coming to a close, let us examine whether or not we are truly focusing on what is important about the Christian life. I have come to learn that the Christian life is first and foremost a cross-centered life. We must first of all come to the cross, and then we must stay there until Christ calls us home. We cannot lead others to the cross if we have wandered away from it ourselves. If you have found yourself in this situation, I call you to ask God to give you a fresh view of your soul. Look intently into the Word, let it be your mirror, and agree with God about what He says about your condition. Remember that apart from Christ there is no good thing that dwells within you.

There is a beauty in the cross, in that it deals thoroughly with our sin, the very ugliness of our own souls. When you understand this, you will cling to the cross, carrying it with you wherever you go. As we enter a new year, it is my prayer that you will carry the cross as your standard; that you will experience the true freedom and joy that comes from living the crucified life so that you can look forward to seeing Christ face to face with great anticipation, and upon seeing Him hear those wonderful words, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant".

For further reading: THE FOOT OF THE CROSS
by Octavius Winslow, 1864.

From the preface ~

"It is finished!" -but what mortal dare
In that triumph hope to share?
Savior, to Your cross I flee;
Say, It is finished! and for me.

"Then will I sing, The cross! the cross!
And count all other gain but loss;
I'll sing the cross, and to Your tree
Cling evermore, blessed Calvary!

Thursday, December 18, 2008


Click HERE to read the article.


Until I read the following article, I never really understood the purpose of the two genealogies given in Scripture as they related to the birth of Jesus Christ, even though I did know that one was the genealogy of Joseph (Matthew's gospel) and the other the genealogy of Mary/Miriam (Luke's gospel).

What I discovered was that Matthew's gospel was written from Joseph's perspective with him playing the active role, and Mary playing the passive. The genealogy of Joseph was included in Scripture to show that his natural offspring are excluded from from the royal line of David for three reasons, which are as follows: it includes four women, all of these women are Gentiles, and it includes the line of Jeconiah who was cursed from ever providing an heir to the throne. Anyone who is a Jew would automatically understand by this that none of Joseph's natural offspring could ever sit on David's throne. Immediately following this genealogy we are told that what was conceived within her was of the Holy Ghost before Joseph and Mary came together. The picture is clear: Jesus is not the natural offspring of Joseph.

Read The Genealogy of the Messiah by Arnold J. Fruchtenbaum.

Another article of note: Response to "The Fabulous Prophecies of the Messiah"


  1. A Virgin Conceived
  2. An Old Testament Prophet Predicted A God-Man
  3. Angels Announced The Birth
  4. A Sign Appeared In The Sky
  5. The Time Was Right
  6. Jesus Claimed To Be Equal With God
  7. His Friends Worshipped Him
  8. Jesus' Enemies Accused Him Of Blasphemy
  9. Jesus' Miracles Supported His Claims
  10. His Departure Was Greater Than His Arrival

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


USMB has posted an article addressing the topic of bloggers who anonymously "attack" the MB Conference and MBBS. Click HERE to read it. In case my response to this article is removed from their site, I have placed it here as well. It is as follows:


As a blogger, I would like to respond to this article. My blog may or may not be one of those referred to.

One of the reasons I created my blog, at (just over a year ago) is that I wanted to have a record of the things I was seeing in “Christendom” in general, and the MB Conference in particular. (A broader statement of the purpose for my blog can be found on my website.) The other reason is that I wanted to have a voice in the Christian community. The MB Herald provides a space for this voice in its letters section, but only 200-300 words are allowed. This simply is not enough space to say what I want to say. I highly doubt if the Herald would welcome me as a contributing author as I am rather an unknown in the MB circles and in the literary world. I also believe that my voice would be considered unwelcome there because I am speaking out about things I see which are construed to be controversial in nature. My voice is one calling out for discernment in a day and age where false doctrine and false teachers abound. It seems there are many who are willing to sacrifice truth on the altar of unity.

Regarding anonymity, I originally chose to remain anonymous for several reasons. The primary one is that of personal privacy, because I am a woman online which makes me vulnerable to those who may wish to harm me. It is also for the protection of my husband and children. My message on my blog is evangelical in nature and one that espouses the exclusivity of the gospel message, a message which could be construed as hate in a world where truth is relative, and proselytizing an act of hatred. Those who claim to be tolerant will not tolerate those who claim the Jesus is God in the flesh and the only way to a restored relationship with God by His substitutionary and efficacious death on the cross. Some of the evangelistic blog postings and links that are found on my blog could be reason for those who espouse “political correctness” to have my blog removed from the blogosphere, which would also mean that my witness would also be lost to those who find my blog while searching for the truth. I could be legally charged for “inciting hatred” according to those who think this way. (There has already been once case where that has happened.) I have an email address on my blog by which people can contact me. This way it is at my discretion to decide whether this person is an honest enquirer or a malicious person wishing to cause me trouble. At one time, not long ago, I did reveal my last name, and it was in regard to an article for which I knew it was vitally important to be accountable. Since reading the above article, I have decided that I would take the risk and leave my full name permanently on my blog. It may lead to persecution, and I need to be willing to face it if I want to speak the truth. So be it. If anonymity is the problem to those in the MB Conference, I willingly place my full name on my blog.

I really have nothing to hide. On my blog, I state that I am capable of error and open to correction. That doesn’t mean I won’t defend the truth when I think it is being undermined. I am not going to roll over and play dead just because somebody doesn’t like what I have to say. I would hope that any person who may read and/or comment on my blog would also be open to correction; however, I will not engage in arguments with people who already have their mind made up, being convinced that I am wrong, and also that I am being malicious and hateful. Anybody who really knows me knows that I am not that kind of person.

I have spent a full two years researching two of the main topics of my blog, the spiritual formation movement and the emergent church. My blog is the fruit of that research. I really wish that what I know about these things were not true. It would sure make my life a lot less complicated. For a long time I tried to convince myself that I was wrong about these things, but I have come to the conclusion that I can no longer deny the conclusions I have come to. The purpose for my blogging is not to be malicious or slanderous. Some people think what I am saying is an “attack”, but if that is the case, what is being said in the above article is also an attack on bloggers. And now that you know my name you can even “attack” me personally. Anyone who is willing to take the time to carefully examine my blog will soon see that I have a deep love for both the Living Word and the written Word.

Very rarely do I post anything without first giving it very serious thought and careful research into the matter, especially if it is something serious in nature. It seems many would like to forget the warnings in Scripture that we are to give attendance to doctrine, to watch out for false teachers and false teaching, even to the point of naming names and warning others to stay away from such. Jude especially wrote with a sense of urgency to warn believers about such things. Are we to neglect doing this? I fear that this is what is happening. By the tone of the above article, it seems that its author believes that the MB institutions are incapable of teaching error, and do not want to deal with the possibility that some of their leaders could be in error. We must be careful not to idolize people and institutions. We are to follow Christ and Christ alone. I’m happy that the Board of Faith and Life affirms their adherence to their statement of faith. I wonder, however, what action they would take if they found out someone is teaching error, whether they care to admit it or not. I think those in leadership are too quick to accept people just because they have a few initials behind their name. And I think they have forgotten just how devious Satan is.

Most people do not want to talk to me face to face about the issues I tackle. They are afraid that it might upset their applecart. Some are even completely ignorant about the issues I am tackling. My blog is a place where I am free to express my opinion to the full extent, and where people who are afraid to tackle certain topics in a face-to-face encounter can ask questions and find information. I think that Christian bloggers have an important place in this world. It is not difficult to discern what a blogger’s intent is with a careful examination of all of the contents of their site. Don’t be so quick to judge a blogger’s intent as malicious just because they don’t agree with everything you say and do. As always, I encourage people to examine what I have to say carefully, and to use Scripture as their guide and measuring stick. God’s Word is always to be our final authority in all matters of faith and life. I want people to check out what I have written, to judge for themselves whether it is true or not. I do not claim to be the last word on anything. I am not trying to mislead people, and I tell them not to take what I say as gospel truth, although I love the truth and want it to be known. I want people to diligently seek the truth, not just take my word for it, or anybody else’s for that matter, whether they be in leadership or not. People are not perfect, but those who have a sincere love the truth know when something rings true and will vigorously defend it, especially if they love God’s Word and are knowledgeable about it. We must examine our hearts, whether we love the truth more than we love the praise of man. The human heart is deceitful and desperately wicked, and our minds in need of transformation. We must allow the light of God’s Word to shine on our hearts and minds, to discern our thoughts and the intents of our hearts.

As both a blogger, a Mennonite, and a Christian, by sticking my neck out and challenging people by what I write, I actually stand to lose a lot. I was a fifth generation member of my local MB church (a member for 35 years). Two of my children are sixth generation members there. My family has very strong ties to the MB denomination and to the people in our local church in particular. However, I chose to withdraw my membership from this church this April because it is an MB church. It was one of the most difficult decisions I have ever made. I did not do this without a lot of very serious thought. It was a heart-wrenching experience; it did not give me any pleasure to do so. I still love this little church and still attend there. I refuse to run away from any who wish to question what I have done. I have been open and upfront in my handling of the matter. I have been under the scrutiny of our church ever since by those who still do not understand my reasons for doing so, partly because they don’t want to know the reasons for fear of the consequences. They risk the loss of family support and fellow-member’s understanding and the ensuing alienation, the same risk that I took by doing what I did. I would have preferred actually not to have withdrawn my membership, but was compelled to do so by some of the things being taught through some of the MB publications and educational institutes. Please understand this: it has given me no pleasure to do so, and it gives me no pleasure to write what I write about on my blog. I am compelled to speak out to defend the truth and to warn my fellow-believers about what I see happening because I love them and am concerned for their spiritual well-being. My blog is both my personal testimony and my voice, and I refuse to keep silent. The things that are happening with the Spiritual Formation movement and the emerging church are promoting a form of godliness that is without the power to transform lives in a positive and biblical way. I stand behind that statement 100%, and have the personal experience to prove it.

So, what to do about us “bloggers”? If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear. If everything the seminary is teaching and the MB Conference is promoting is biblical, once again, you have nothing to fear. I, for one, only desire to have the truth be known. If you have the same goal, you have nothing to fear. I have basically put everything on the line by speaking out. I may suffer some dire consequences by being upfront with you in this comment I am writing. I may come under attack. I may even be charged with libel (although I don’t think I have said nothing libellous). A lot of people may not like me, they may even be told to stay away from me. Judge this matter for yourself. Do I speak the truth on my blog or not? If I do, once again, you have nothing to fear, unless of course you fear man rather than God. But then you seriously need to examine yourself, to see if you are in the faith.

For the record, I have never attended any Bible School or Seminary within the MB Conference. I do however have one year of Bible School at a non-denominational school and have taken several seminary courses at a non-denominational seminary, one of them being Spiritual Formation. I have never made any claims to the contrary. However, I have examined the MBBS syllabus on Spiritual Formation and found it to be very "contemplative" in the monastic sense of the word. The authors recommended on the syllabus are also pro-contemplative. Also for the record, regarding my "anonymity" nobody from MBBS has ever emailed me at the address listed on my blog to ask who I am. If they had done so, I would have had no problem telling them my name.

Jesus, if I have said anything here that brings you shame or is a blot on the garment of your Bride, the church, I pray that you will reveal it to me by your Spirit, and correct me as soon as possible. It is my desire to be an open book before you and my fellow-believers.

Purchased by His blood and kept by His grace,



Added later:

Oh, and by the way, I am one of those who have been praying for those in positions of leadership within the MB Conference and at MBBS for several years already, and I will continue to do so, as you are asking for prayer.

So whether you consider me an enemy, a mischief-maker (as stated in the article) or just a plain nuisance, I AM a fellow-believer in Christ and a fellow-Mennonite, one who is willing to sound a voice of warning when it is unpopular to do so. Before you make a judgment about me and what I say, I will ask you to carefully check out everything I have to say for yourself. I do not believe it is my job to convince anybody about anything one way or another. That is the job of the Holy Spirit. It is only my job to speak out about what I see. What I ask is that you be willing to examine the issues carefully from both sides as I have, and then make your own decision, being led by the Holy Spirit and open to His correction where necessary.

I have never intentionally misrepresented any educational institute. I take what I do as a blogger very seriously and provide as much documentation as possible. If I have ever said anything that could be construed as libelous, I would appreciate you letting me know, as that is not my intent. I am not interested in getting involved in any legal suits with any Christian brethren. There have been times when I have even asked others to proof-read my work to make sure that I was not doing or saying anything out of a malicious spirit, or that was immoral or illegal. If there has ever been a doubt in my mind as to whether I should post an article or not, it remained as a draft only until I was sure about what I had written, and had prayed about the matter. These are safeguards I have put in place, and yet I know I am still fully capable of error. Although I am speaking out, I hope you will see that it is with discretion.

I am just one small voice in a vast sea of Mennonites. I have come to see things differently than most and I am not like most people you know. I am not the least bit concerned with other people's opinion about me, although I don't set out to deliberately offend others. I have a deep-seated reverential fear of God. I read and study all day long most days even though I am not in a formal educational institute. Although I have taken classes in a seminary, I have concluded that the best textbook is the Bible and the best teacher the Holy Spirit; that God's Word alone contains everything we need to know about life and godliness. I take offense to those who uphold the words of a "Bible scholar" above the words of the Bible itself. I am only 45 years old, and yet I am not interested in the latest and greatest craze regarding personal spiritual growth or church growth. I am interested in the knowledge God has provided in His Word about such things. I still think the proclamation of truth and the personal testimony of believers are the most powerful tools for growth that exist, and I believe these are the tools God gives us for church growth. You cannot improve on God's Word or His methods; and, we don't need to make God's Word relevant: It IS relevant, period! So many have come to the conclusion that we need to adopt the world's ways of doing things to win the world, but God calls us OUT of the world, to be separate, to make a difference between what is profane and holy.

Let it be known that I am a firm believer that those who are concerned for their character care not a whit for their reputation. Those who think they have anything to fear by me are more concerned about appearances than character, more concerned about money than about truth.

I challenge those in leadership to carefully examine their teachings before God and His Word, and continue to allow themselves to be conformed to His image. Christ's last message to the churches called for repentance. I urge you all, dear brothers and sisters, in light of His imminent return, to carefully examine yourselves in all things. May God bless you as you respond to Him with humility and obedience. I also ask for your prayers for me, that God will continue His work in and through me as I walk the narrow way. I am "looking unto Jesus the AUTHOR and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God the Father."

I am "For the Author",

Friday, December 5, 2008


On Steven Camp's blog, CAMPONTHIS, he has posted an article called LIKE PEOPLE, LIKE evangelicalism on the downgrade? on which he has placed an excerpt from C.H. Spurgeon's writing, The Down-Grade Controversy. Quoting from this excerpt, I encourage those who are willing to stick their necks out to defend the truth within the MB Conference. It seems like nobody wants to be inconvenienced these days with confronting error. We are expected to keep silent for the sake of unity. Most stand alone within their church, presumed to have gone off the deep end spiritually. This is for all of those warriors who feel like they are standing alone today.
"It now becomes a serious question how far those who abide by the faith once delivered to the saints should fraternize with those who have turned aside to another gospel. Christian love has its claims, and divisions are to be shunned as grievous evils; but how far are we justified in being in confederacy with those who are departing from the truth? It is a difficult question to answer so as to keep the balance of the duties. For the present it behoves believers to be cautious, lest they lend their support and countenance to the betrayers of the Lord. It is one thing to overleap all boundaries of denominational restriction for the truth's sake: this we hope all godly men will do more and more. It is quite another policy which would urge us to subordinate the maintenance of truth to denominational prosperity and unity. Numbers of easy-minded people wink at error so long as it is committed by a clever man and a good-natured brother, who has so many fine points about him. Let each believer judge for himself; but, for our part, we have put on a few fresh bolts to our door, and we have given orders to keep the chain up; for, under color of begging the friendship of the servant, there are those about who aim at robbing THE MASTER.

We fear it is hopeless ever to form a society which can keep out men base enough to profess one thing and believe another; but it might be possible to make an informal alliance among all who hold the Christianity of their fathers. Little as they might be able to do, they could at least protest, and as far as possible free themselves of that complicity which will be involved in a conspiracy of silence. If for a while the evangelicals are doomed to go down, let them die fighting, and in the full assurance that their gospel will have a resurrection when the inventions of "modern thought" shall be burned up with fire unquenchable." ~ C. H. Spurgeon
Professing one thing, and teaching/believing another